Art Nouveau

Art Nouveau was a style that rose to prominence in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. I would say the heyday for art nouveau was from around 1890 to 1910, but of course, there is not a specific start and end date for any art movement. People can’t even agree on when or where the term first appeared. Some say it was in an art magazine in Belgium in the 1880s, while others say the origin of the name came about in Paris when the collector Sigfried Bing named his gallery, La Maison de’l Art Nouveau which means, the house of the new art. Art Nouveau was a deliberate attempt to create a new art style. Illustrators, jewelers, architects and interior designers wanted something fresh that would stand apart from the historic pieces that had been dominant in the European art world for most of the previous century. I would say another big factor was the industrial revolution. As hard-edged steel and glass forms sprung up, the art nouveau movement gave people soft, organic flowing lines. It was a breath of fresh air, creating a new style by looking at the oldest inspiration of all nature as a counterbalancing force to modern industrial design.